It’s a well-known fact that influencer marketing is one of the hottest marketing trends right now. Influencers are driving sales for brands around a topic, service or even a niche product. With millennials making up most of the audience, they are moving away from traditional media. Hence, businesses are getting more invested in influencer marketing via social media. And turning Instagram into the most preferred platform for influencers. It’s reported that Influencer marketing on Instagram alone will produce over $1.7 billion in revenue by the end of 2017 and will continue to grow. So how do businesses rope in these popular Instagram influencers and how does the process work?
Why Instagram for Influencer Marketing?
To begin with, the engagement rate on Instagram is higher than on any other social media platform. Images on Instagram get 23% more engagement than their Facebook counterparts on average. Moreover, Instagram has been gaining popularity over the years and it is continuing to grow year-on-year. Here are some stats which show why influencer marketing on Instagram is a good idea.
- More than 2 million advertisers worldwide are using Instagram to share their stories
- 60% of people have said they discover new products via Instagram
- More than 200 million Instagrammers visit at least one business page daily
- One-third of the most viewed stories are from businesses
And the reason behind influencer marketing being popular on Instagram isn’t surprising. People love visual content and influencers seem to be more trustworthy than with traditional marketing methods which have become intrusive. As opposed to traditional promotions, influencer marketing is two-way communication. The influencer and follower relationships are based on the word-of-mouth concept.
Still wondering how to make this work for your brand?
Who are Instagram Influencers?
Before you start your influencer marketing campaign, you should know a little about the influencers. Influencers are of different kinds.
It can be seen from the title, that these are celebrities who are famous for their work in their respective fields and are adored by hundreds of people. Personalities like Beyonce or Benedict Cumberbatch fall into this category. Since people admire them, they would like to believe that whatever product these celebrities are endorsing is truly worth possessing. But only large enterprises can afford to work with celebrities, whose charges are usually steep.
Macro influencers are famous and a household name many a time. These are almost celebrities themselves with followers ranging from thousands to millions. These people have gained fame in niche fields showcasing their passion and hence people have come to trust and admire them. People like Marques Brownlee – a youtube vlogger who talks about technology and has over 9 million followers – fall into this category.
These people are starting to get famous and recognized. They have a couple of thousands of followers and are suitable to collaborate with if you have a small business. They take a small paycheck or would sometimes endorse your brand even for a product discount, free trial or to build a mutually beneficial partnership.
How to Find Instagram Influencers?
According to EConsultancy, one of the trickiest jobs in influencer marketing is to find the right set of influencers. You can approach this systematically and with some help from social listening tools.
1. Know your target audience
Before you reach out to influencers, you need to know your audience. Which age group are you targeting? Are they from a specific geographic location? What are their interests? The quintessential features that define this target audience have to be studied well.
This step is essential because while searching for an influencer you need someone who has followers from the same category.
You can also divide your audience into niche groups while sourcing for influencers. Say your brand makes organic beauty/health products. You can partner with influencers who talk about organic food and influencers who talk about beauty/health products with organic ingredients.
2. Look for the right influencer
Now that you know your target audience and what message your brand wants to put forth, it is going to be easier to find a suitable influencer. Remember, the influencer you chose has to sound relevant to your audience. A millennial YouTuber may not sound convincing enough to your target audience of middle-aged men if you are trying to sell financial investment plans.
Social media listening tools can help you in this ordeal. Type in your keyword or topic related to your brand and start monitoring. Social listening tools display the top influencers talking about the keyword. Apart from this many social listening tools also track the influencer scores of everyone who shows interest in the topic and is discussing it. So you get to filter out influencers based on their influencer scores.
If you want to do this exercise without a tool, you can always find people organically. Go to the search space on Instagram. Type in the keyword and check out the top posts for the keyword. The people who are trending are probably the top influencers in the field. To be sure, search through their profiles more closely. Look at their posts, the frequency of posts, their engagement rate et cetera.
3. Engage and Implement
Finally, to start your influencer marketing journey you need to convince your chosen influencer to collaborate with you. Engaging with them over direct messaging or contacting them via their secretaries (if they are extremely famous) is the first step. Influencers are human beings too, build a relationship with them and try to see how compatible are they to work with. Once the friendship is in place, you are ready to launch your campaign.
In conclusion, we would like to remind you that launching a campaign isn’t the end of your responsibilities. It is essential to measure your results and track the campaigns. You may pay a fortune to an influencer but you need the data to know how well or poorly the campaign went. Keep experimenting with more cost-effective ways to launch your influencer marketing campaign.